Full-Day Habal-Habal Tour: Katibawasan Falls and the Road to Enchantment
Further up the volcanic mountains, down the slopes and along steep cliffs that overlook Camiguin Island’s dense rainforest, we seeked fresh flowing waterfalls at the foot of a mountain on our habal-habal ride.
After a dip in the warm volcanic springs at Mt. Hibok-Hibok in the morning, a visit to heritage sites at the foot of Mount Vulcan at noon, including the Walkway, the Sunken Cemetery and the Old Church Ruins, a sweet seaside break at the Camiguin Bee Hive Bistro, we ventured to Katibawasan Falls at Mount Timpoong for an invigorating afternoon dip.
The newly-paved road leading to this cold gushing spring water afforded us a smooth ride and a sharp glance into the core of the island; where the main concrete road that stretches along the cliffs and into the mountains was being widened, consequently discarding olden trees and infringing virgin forests, and a high mountain was being reduced off its might by swaggering machines right at the main entrance to the falls.
Such uncanny and paradoxical approach to eco-tourism does not seem to perturb tourists in paying a fee for the environmental upon entering the falls. Perhaps it was the urgency of immersing in the cool water on a hot day that kept them detached of the ongoing construction outside.
Katibawasan Falls, at a glance, clearly exudes excitement, as diverse tropical plants sprout bounteously through limestone rocks, naturally emitting an enchanting welcome into its grandiose spring water falling 250 meters high up from the crease of Mount Timpoong.
With mineral rocks that filter the water from its ground, the waterfalls become a natural health spa that promotes tons of benefits. Studies include that it reduces blood pressure, cholesterol, fat, as well as inhibits blood clotting and increases fertility and libido in both men and women.
We waded in the limestone-chilled water for as long as our bodies needed. When the water had felt too cold, we stepped out of, slowly balancing on different rocks until we reached the bank where we discretely changed our clothes.
As we were leaving, I saw a young man soaping himself somewhere at the lower portion of the falls with his clothes on.
Thinking that the Nature is all giving, we simply exited the spot and rode at the back of our habal-habal. We felt the temperature turning cold, as we went high up on the mountain, passing by modest houses with carabaos lying on the ground, and inhaling the fresh crisp air of the untouched mountain peaks.
After the long and enchanting streaks of panoramic sites on the road from Katibawasan Falls to Mambajao, we were back at our quarters inside the Camiguin Aviation compound, thanking our habal-Habal guy with an 850php bill for his services.
At the end of the day, we were snug with our host family relaxing with some hearty snacks and buko juice to the silhouette of the sunset.
Cebu Pacific Air offers direct flights from Cebu to Camiguin. For bookings and inquiries, guests can visit www.cebupacificair.com or call (+632) 7020-888 or (+6332)230-8888. The latest seat sales can be found on CEB’s official Facebook and Twitter pages. Guests may also download the Cebu Pacific official mobile app on the App Store and Google Play.